HEIDI | How do you organize your digital photos?
TARALEIGH GRAY | This is definitely what I would ask too! Do you do it by calendar day or do you organize by event? What photo organizing software do you use, if any? How often do you back-up your photos and what methods do you use?
AE | I'm currently using Aperture to organize my digital photos (see photo above). I'd call myself a basic user - I use it for organizing my photos and sometimes use the adjustment options to lighten photos if they seem to dark. I organize by month for our family photos and then by project for my work-related images. I haven't gotten into tagging yet...it's a project I'd like to undertake at some point in time but for now simply putting them in the correct folder each time I upload seems to be going well.
My Aperture photo library is stored on an external hard-drive. It's currently backed up using Mozy. I will be switching away from Mozy when the time I've already paid for is up since they have raised their prices significantly. I'm looking at Backblaze or Crashplan to replace Mozy. I also use Time Machine on my Mac to back up everything to a second hard drive.
LEE | I have all of my digital elements in my iPhoto program and it works pretty well but I’m sure I can make it better. I was wondering how you store your elements – by date? by kit? by element? by artist? How do you store them in order to find them again? I’ve only just started digi and I’m already overwhelmed with the options!
ELECTA | Can you please tell us how you organize your digital scrapbooking papers, templates, etc? Do you print a hard copy and keep it in a notebook and then reference it on the computer? I am struggling to figure out how to use different elements from different manufacturers.
AE | I've got a post that talks about my digital product organization structure here. I've kept things really simple for myself by just using folders. I don't print out any hard copies.
KATE | Do you use a tablet or digital pen? I’m looking at the Bamboo Craft tablet and was wondering what you use to create your digital products.
AE | I do use a tablet. I've been using a Wacom Intuos 3 tablet for quite a few years now and it works great. I create many of my digital products using this tablet. I also hand-write sentiments on paper and scan them into Illustrator to create products.
PRINTING DIGITAL PAGES
ANNETTE | I dabble a bit in digi and wondered when you print your digi pages where do you print them (12×12) and what type of paper you have them printed on??? I have printed a few with my Epson printer, but the colors seem to muted.
AE | I print both here at home and with online services. I like scrapbookpictures.com and Persnickety Prints. I've used both and they are great. I think I usually choose matte paper. I'm not too picky with the paper type.
GETTING STARTED WITH DIGITAL
LINDSAY | I’ve always been a traditional scrapbooker and have been thinking about getting into digital scrapbooking – how do you recommend I get start?
SHARON | I have the Adobe photoshop program and really don’t have a clue on how to use it. Any suggestions on where is a good site to learn to use it?
AE | I've got a list of posts about getting started available here. I also list a few other recommendations at the bottom of that post of places to go to learn the basics. My biggest suggestion is to take it one layout, one project at a time. There's all kinds of things you can do with Photoshop and lots to learn - I learn new stuff all the time. I love that it's simply another option for telling our stories.
OTHER DIGITAL QUESTIONS
TONI | A technique question – I use photoshop elements and have recently been given a basic tablet YAY! I like the way you put thin borders around your photos with a word encased in the border. Using the above tools is it possible for me to create borders like you. I like the rounded corners you make and would like to do similar things on my photos but sometimes with my own writing to make it more personal for my kids (though I do love yours!!!).
AE | Sure! Here's a written tutorial from Designer Digitals that will walk you through the steps in Elements. I use Illustrator because it's a simpler process (vs. having to create a stroke and then delete the inside of the rounded corner rectangle). With a tablet you can draw words right into Photoshop - I've had more success drawing words into Illustrator vs. Photoshop but it can definitely be done.
SHAUNA | I have learned so much from you in the past year especially with digtal scrapbooking. I just bought your letters and downloaded them onto my computer. So my question is how do I put them in Photoshop or word where I can use them to journal with? I have been trying to use them but it only lets me use them one letter at a time!! (grr.) sorry if this is a silly question but I still feel very new and clueless in the digtal world! Thanks again.
AE | Hi Shauna - can you tell me a little more about what package your purchased? If you purchased an alphabet it's not the same thing as a font - you do select one letter at a time for placement on your layout/project.
VAL IRWIN | I recently purchased your Today You Album from Designer Digitals, it says it is Shutterfly ready, when I look on Shutterfly I don’t see how where I need to go to publish my own photobook without using the templates supplied. Thanks!!
AE | Click here to access Shutterfly's Classic Custom Path. Click that yes, you still want to use the classic custom path. Select your book size - such as 12x12. Under the Styles drop-down menu select "Print Your Digital Scrapbook." From there, once you are all signed in, you should be able to place your saved JPG files into the book.
If you'd like more information on getting started with digital scrapbooking check out my series here: Getting Started With Digital Scrapbooking.
This post is part of a 2011 Memory Keeping Q&A series. Additional posts in this series will be listed below as they are posted. Past Q&A posts are available via the Category Archives here.